So the elections are behind us. I am not sure anyone really expected something that peaceful, but they pretty much went off without a hitch (a couple hundred people got together to march in SPS, but they were dispersed with tear gas...I have heard of nothing else at this point.)
Nothing like the republic threatened to get people out at the polls either (despite promises from the resistance to cause havoc and small bombs being set off, etc.) with reports saying that the turnout was over 60%, which is supposed to be a high number. Interesting I thought, because the last US election was reported at something close to that figure (depending on what website you consult) So I looked up our last election...and surprise, surprise, the turnout then was around 46% so I guess that is quite a bit higher. What will happen to Mel? How will this continue to play out? All signs look good at this point, but I am guessing Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua, Bolivia and any other socialist countries will still not be too pleased.
I went up to the clinic today...Oscar decorated the clinic with poinsetias and the tree was up...it was quite festive. We talked about what has happened in my abscence, and upcoming plans, plus looking over what we got in the latest container which was chock full o' good stuff for every area of the mission. It looks like CHE training will start next week, the work continued quite a bit on the soccer field (with more needed...some more rebar, the doors to get in and out, and the goals, we still have some money to do that...but are short about half what is still needed.) Plus we think we have enough money donated coming that we can help get Dora's wall done, so we will start helping her on that this week.
We hit the ground running arriving back here on Saturday. God has provided us great weather, an easy transition back for the most part, but there is as always plenty of work to be done...and Valerie and I both are struggling in different areas on finding a good balance between ministry and family. I am not sure I can adequately communicate the struggle here, but for those that know the feeling, and even those that do not, we would appreciate your prayers.
How about a new family picture from our trip to the US? One of the two or three days we were all together was Thanksgiving, and someone was thinking enough that we actually got one taken of all four of us. We always say we need to do that more often. And for those that see me in Cecilia or Valerie in Soren...the older they get the more I see it like one of those funky dime store images where when you look from the right you see one thing and the left another...just today I looked at Cecilia and definitely saw her mother in a way that was a little eerily cool...because I know what kind of person she is, and what kind of woman I see Cecilia becoming.